Looking to Buy Espresso Accessories? 9 Must-Have Pieces of Gear

In the world of coffee, there are a lot of accessories that you can buy. From the espresso machine to the grinder, to the tamper, and more. But what about all the other things?

The tools don’t make the barista, but a skilled barista learns to use each of them to perfect their craft.

In this article are 9 necessary espresso accessories that you should have at your coffee bar if you’re looking to elevate your skills as a barista.

What is Espresso?

For those of you new to the wonderful world of espresso, here is a basic rundown of the espresso pulling process.

Espresso is a concentrated coffee drink made using an espresso machine. The process of making espresso starts with premium quality coffee beans. These beans are ground to a fine coarseness. The grounds are tamped into your machine’s portafilter and the portafilter is positioned for pulling the shots on the machine. High-pressure water is then passed through the grounds. This forces the water through the grinds very quickly which is called pulling a shot.

The word “espresso” comes from the Italian word for “pressed out” which refers to how this type of coffee is made using pressure to force water through finely-ground beans.

Coffee Equipment and Buying Espresso Accessories to Get the Job Done

Espresso Machines are high-precision tools. There are many accessories that either make the job of pulling the perfect shot easier or more accurate. We’ll go through some of our favourite gear for making espresso.

1. Burr Coffee Grinder

Burr grinders are the best type of grinder for making espresso. They provide a consistent grind, which is important for espresso. Inconsistent grinds make it hard to dial in the exact pressure and timing you are looking for with espresso shots.

To get the best results from your burr grinder, you need to know the difference between coarse and fine grind settings. Espresso grounds need to be consistent, but they also need to be ground fine. Too coarse and the water will not be able to build up enough pressure to ‘pull’ a shot.

Buy an Automatic Burr Grinder or a Manual Burr Grinder

2. Tamper Mat

The tamper mat is a must-have for any barista. It helps with the tamping process, which is a crucial step in making espresso.

This mat has many benefits. First, it makes the tamping process easier and more consistent by providing a flat surface that can be used to tamp coffee grounds uniformly. Second, it reduces the risk of spilling coffee grounds on your countertop or floor when you are tamping. Third, it provides protection for your countertop from excess moisture and the pressure of firmly tamping your grounds in the portafilter.

Buy a Wide and Flat Tamper Mat

3. Knock Box

The knock box is a device that is used to separate used espresso grounds from the portafilter. It has two parts: a container and a knocking surface. The container holds the used grounds, while the knocking surface allows you to knock the grounds out safely but quickly. This is faster than scoping the grounds out with a spoon or knife.

Buy a Durable Knock Box

4. Calibrated Tamper

The calibrated tamper is the most important tool for any barista. It ensures that the espresso is extracted properly and consistently.

Most calibrated tampers are made of stainless steel. They are offered in a range of weights and sizes for different espresso machines and preferences.

The best part about this tool is that it can be easily adjusted to suit the user's needs. Calibrated tampers have the added benefit of ensuring that you are tamping your grounds to the correct compression level. It helps you to not over-tamp or under-tamp your grounds.

Buy 51mm Calibrated Tamper, 53mm Calibrated Tamper, or 58mm Calibrated Tamper

5. Espresso Shot Glasses

There isn’t much about shot glasses that capture your attention. They are a critical part of pulling espresso as they are the preferred container for espresso. But espresso shot glasses do come in a variety of different styles and sizes. There are also many different materials that they can be made out of, such as glass, stainless steel, and even plastic; all of which will affect the price.

Many people recommend glass shot glasses as they find plastic and metal ones alter the taste of the espresso. If you do get a glass shot glass, make sure it is well insulated, so it holds the temperature of the shot.

Buy 2oz Espresso Shot Glass

6. Gooseneck Kettle

A gooseneck kettle is a high-end, long-spouted kettle designed to provide hot water for making coffee or tea. A gooseneck kettle is an essential tool for any coffee enthusiast. It is used to bring water to the desired temperature and accurately and easily pour.

The design of the gooseneck kettle makes it easier to pour hot water without spilling it all over the countertop or table. This is because the spout of the gooseneck pulls water from the bottom of the pitcher. The slender spout gives you very high precision in pouring water.

Interested in one? Buy our Gooseneck Kettle Accessory here.

In espresso making, gooseneck kettles are nice for tempering containers that you use throughout the shot pulling process. To temper a shot glass (or anything) you simply add hot water to that item. This raises the temperature of the item to match the temperature of the brewing process. You simply temper the container and pour out the water, so it is immediately ready for use.

7. Coffee Weigh Scale

The coffee scale is a bar top device that measures the weight of coffee beans and can help determine the amount of water needed to make a proper shot.

Coffee scales are used for precision measuring. Anything that can be measured at any point in the process is worth doing. As baristas advance in their craft, fine-tune measuring becomes more and more important.

Buy Digital Coffee Scale

8. Espresso Machine Cleaners

Espresso machines are often difficult to clean, but with the right tools, it can be done. The most important thing is to do a deep clean at least once a month.

The most important thing is to do a deep clean at least once a month.

There are many ways of doing this, but the most popular way is by using an espresso machine cleaner. There are many different types of cleaners available. What you are mostly looking for is something that can break down the mineral build-up from your water inside the machine. This will also sanitize all the hoses, tubes, and spouts on the machine.

Cleaning the exterior stainless-steel surfaces with stainless steel cleaner is important too. It does not leave any streaks or residue after use, and it leaves the surface feeling silky smooth. Coffee often is splashed in hard-to-reach places, so this is important to do weekly.

Microfiber cloths are also great for wiping away any coffee stains that may have accumulated throughout a day’s use. It is best to wipe down your machine after each use to slow accumulated build-up. Hand or machine washing all your utensils is recommended at this interval also to keep your area safe for making drinks.

Buy Cafiza Cleaning Tablets and Microfiber Cloth

9. Steaming Pitcher

A milk steamer pitcher is a container that can be used to steam milk for coffee drinks such as cappuccinos and lattes. The container is usually made of stainless steel and comes in different sizes. Typically, you would match the pitcher size to the average drink size you are creating. It is very important that your steaming pitcher has an insulated handle as the metal gets very hot while steaming your milk.

Buy 12oz Milk Steaming Pitcher

Home Espresso Machine - What Beginners Should Look For

The best espresso machine for beginners is one that offers a variety of options. It should offer an easy-to-use interface. It should also be low maintenance and easy to clean.

The best espresso machine for beginners should be versatile enough to fulfil the needs of a beginner who may not know what they want yet. It should have a variety of options so that beginners can experiment with different types of drinks and coffee beans until they find their favourite.

You should be able to control the amount of coffee grounds you use, the amount of what you use per shot, the timing of the shot, as well as have a way to steam milk. Having a machine that lets you control as many variables as possible will be very important as you learn how to make espresso. The accessories in this article will go a long way in helping you master the art of espresso making or if you’re simply looking to looking to buy espresso accessories.

 

 About the Author
Founder of Windansea Coffee sitting at a beach smiling wearing a beanie
This article was written by Jordan O'Hara, Founder of Windansea Coffee. 
You can learn more about him here.

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